All things AG – the Importance and Impact of Agriculture in Waupaca County
by Annette Spieth
We started the day at Fietzer Dairy Farm in Manawa. The family operation milks their cows using 6 robotic milkers with each unit milking 50-60 cows per day. They have a dairy herd of over 300. They also raise their own heifers to become replacement milking cows. They produce most of the feed for their animals. Fietzer Dairy raises crops on 900 acres of land, 430 of which are owned. The barn is designed for drive-through feeding and features sand bedding for improved cow comfort, while automatic scrapers remove manure from the stalls.
At First State Bank in New London, our sponsor for the day, we had the opportunity to hear from several speakers Mike Morse from First State Bank spoke on the bank’s leadership philosophy. Greg Blonde, UW-Extension Ag Agent, shared with us details about the agriculture economy in Waupaca County. Kevin Konkol, Ag Portfolio Officer from First State Bank, also spoke on agriculture from a lending perspective.
Finally, we visited Quantum Dairy LLC in Weyauwega for a presentation and tour with Richard Wagner. Quantum Dairy is a 1000 cow dairy. They employ a lot of workers, many of whom live on their property. After the presentation we got to watch the milking process and, for those of us who could stay longer, Mr. Wagner gave us a tour of the other dairy barns. It was very interesting to see the other buildings and their purpose, especially where the cows birth their calves – several a day!
All in all it was a very enjoyable day in Agriculture.